Nestling around its magnificent harbour, Sydney is the southern hemisphere’s most spectacular port. Arriving here is breathtaking: after navigating past the narrow, rocky ‘Heads’, cruise ships – surrounded by a flotilla of welcoming yachts – berth at the Ocean Terminal in the shadow of the iconic Harbour Bridge and Opera House.
Cosmopolitan Melbourne is a mélange of tree-shaded parks, splendid Victorian buildings and glass skyscrapers. Adelaide is probably the most European of all Australian cities with St Peter and St Francis Xavier cathedrals adding to the vibe.
Auckland is known as the ‘City of Sails’ and this is evident at the sparkling Waitemata Harbour. The Bay of Islands comprises 150 emerald gems that appear to float in impossibly blue waters lapping the stunning coastal scenery of quaint houses and pristine beaches. On South Island, Christchurch overflows in English influences – the Gothic Cathedral and the Canterbury Museum; it’s even possible to punt along the River Avon.
Beyond the blue horizon, Papeete, capital of Tahiti, is très French and has the joie de vivre to prove it. Nuka’Alofa, the quaint capital of Tonga boasts some of the friendliest people in the entire world. The Fijians too are renowned for their hospitality and sincere greeting – “bula”.